Marmalade Chicken

At the rate things are going, there may not be many warm, dry days of summer this year, which means we have to make the most of every moment. And in the food department, that means eating well without spending hours in the kitchen. As the beloved English food writer Nigel Slater puts it, “sometimes we cook purely for the pleasure of it, understanding the provenance of our ingredients, choosing them with great care, thoughtfully taking them on the journey from shop to plate.” Other times, he says, “we just want to eat.”

Well, here’s the perfect recipe for those times when we just want to eat, and fast. This marmalade chicken, from Mr. Slater’s 2013 cookbook Eat: The Little Book of Fast Food, will have you fed and happy in no time. He slathers drumsticks – I added some bone-in, skin-on thighs – with a mixture of marmalade and grainy mustard and pops them into a hot oven for about half an hour. What comes out are lovely, burnished chicken pieces, glazed, juicy and succulent, with just the right balance of bitter-sweet marmalade and tangy mustard. Yum.

A couple of things to note: I highly recommend lining your pan with foil, as Slater suggests – it will make the clean-up so much easier. Also, his recipe calls for pepper only but I added a sprinkle of salt. And, if you feel like being creative, do as Slater suggests and add a little finely chopped shallot or onion, and/or a pinch of dried red pepper flakes. Finally, this chicken goes well served with crispy potatoes (potato that has been cut into small-ish pieces, tossed with olive oil and salt, and roasted in the oven). But however you make it, and whatever the weather, this dinner will have you back outdoors in no time.

Marmalade Chicken
Even the most enthusiastic cooks have days when they want a good supper on the table fast. For those times, the much-loved English food writer and broadcaster Nigel Slater comes to our rescue with this super-quick recipe for drumsticks that are coated with marmalade and grainy mustard and then baked until they are glazed, juicy and succulent. And all of this in half an hour.
  • 6 large drumsticks
  • Salt and black pepper
  • 6 heaping tablespoons marmalade, thin- or thick-cut
  • 3 tablespoons grainy mustard
  1. Turn oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Place the drumsticks on a foil-lined baking tray or in a small roasting tin. Sprinkle lightly with salt and a grinding of black pepper. In a small bowl, stir the marmalade with the mustard and spoon the mixture over the drumsticks. Bake for about 30 minutes, or until the chicken has turned a rich, burnished colour, and is done.
  • Serves: 2-3


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